India registers 108% surge in transactions for travel
Consumers in India have begun to spend significantly on events, online home services and other such entertainment avenues on the back of growing demand for convenience, seamless accessibility of these services, increase in purchasing power and propensity to spend. According to insights from leading checkout network 'Simple', there has been a 108 per cent growth in transacting users for varied kinds of services in the first eight months of this year.
Between January-August, several consumers used Simpl's 1-tap checkout to access services from merchants such as BookMyShow (movies and events), My Jio (mobile recharge), DriveU (On-Demand driver services), Park+ (Fastag recharge) and NoBroker (Home services, packers & movers) among others, according to Simpl.
During the same time period, the services segment has witnessed a remarkable 59 per cent increase in total payments volume (TPV), signifying the increasing demand for services among Simpl's users. TPV is a crucial factor in determining the value of payments successfully completed through a checkout network, according to a statement shared by Simpl.
Notably, the demand for services category was led by millennials with an average age of 27 years who were responsible for 42 per cent of this demand. While metros cities are at the forefront of this trend, there is an increasing adoption in smaller cities, especially tier-3 and beyond where customers are increasingly adopting internet services made convenient via Simpl's 1-tap checkout.
"An increasing number of consumers today are resorting to online services for travel, entertainment, and other essential and leisure services and are accessing these seamlessly with Simpl's 1-tap checkout. Over the last eight months since January, we have witnessed a 108 per cent growth in transacting users across a plethora of services-based merchants, in a testament to growing affinity of consumers to seek convenience online,'' said Ashwini Ravindranath, Vice-President, Partner Success at Simpl.
‘'This, complemented with our 1-tap checkout, has played a pivotal role in enabling a seamless checkout experience with near zero transactions for millions of customers across the country,'' added Ravindranath.
Source: Live Mint
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Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Jawan’ clocks ₹65 cr on day 1
New Delhi: Actor Shah Rukh Khan’s Jawan has set the record for the highest opening day of all time for an original Hindi movie, clocking ₹65 crore on Thursday. The Atlee-directed film has beaten the record set by Khan’s own Pathaan which had mopped up ₹55 crore when released this January.
The dubbed Tamil and Telugu versions of the film also brought in another ₹8 crore, making for an all-India total collection of ₹71 crore.
“Jawan is off to a roaring start, clocking a mammoth 2.5 million (2,50,000) tickets sold so far, highlighting the unprecedented excitement around the film. At 1.6 million, the film's advance sales are the highest ever for a Shah Rukh Khan film, setting the stage for a blockbuster run," Ashish Saksena, chief operating officer, cinemas, BookMyShow had said in a statement on Thursday.
Saksensa said sales have picked up across the length and breadth of the country for all languages, growing multi-fold for the Tamil and Telugu versions of the film, although the Hindi version is naturally taking the lead.
“What is interesting to note is that the Hindi language version of the film has specifically seen tremendous interest from markets across South and East India such as Hyderabad, Kolkata, Bengaluru and Chennai even as other metros and non-metros across the country including Mumbai, Delhi-NCR, Pune, Coimbatore and Bhubaneswar are propelling the pace for advance sales. Barring Shah Rukh Khan as the leading actor, the entire realm of the film, including the cast, director, storyline, cinematography, music and overall treatment, bears a strong imprint of South Indian influence. Given this context, it's truly heartening to observe that Hindi has been embraced as the preferred language, driven by its mass appeal and popularity," Saksena added.
The popularity of the film also starring Nayanthara and Vijay Sethupathi, is expected to aid the revival of small-town, single-screen cinemas that have shown signs of recovery thanks to Gadar 2 according to trade experts.
“While the movie is expectedly raking in numbers at multiplexes, it has garnered spectacular interest from audiences opting to watch the mass entertainer at a single-screen theatre across the length and breadth of the country. Ticket sales for Jawan at single screen theatres alone has contributed a significant 36% of sales on BookMyShow so far," Saksena pointed out.
The film has released at a time when the industry is seeing its glorious days with people going out to cinemas in huge numbers, said Gautam Dutta, co-CEO, PVR INOX Ltd.
“The love and response of audiences on the first day of the release of Jawan is overwhelming and sensational, and proves the significance and might of mass entertainers in the film industry. The Janmashtami holiday provided an additional thrust across the country. The action-packed spectacle has a truly national appeal with popular stars from the South, including Nayanthara and Vijay Sethupathi, along with an eclectic ensemble of stars, which is making the movie cater to a larger market with its Tamil and Telugu dubbed versions. With the movie also being screened in special formats like IMAX, 4DX and ICE, audiences are enjoying the larger-than-life storytelling in a more experiential manner," Dutta said.
Source: Live Mint
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Jawan tickets at ₹2
Shah Rukh Khan's latest movie, Jawan, has set the ticket counters on fire. Advance bookings have just opened, and guess what? A staggering 41,000 tickets were snapped up in less than two hours. If you're still on the fence, you might just miss out on this cinematic extravaganza.
The ticket prices have soared as high as ₹2,400, but that's not deterring King Khan's loyal fans. The buzz is electric, especially since this is SRK's next big release after the smashing success of Pathaan.
Film trade pundits are already making bold predictions. Manobala Vijayabalan, a renowned trade analyst, took to social media to declare that Jawan is all set to become SRK's second ₹100-crore opener. “That will make it the FIRST ever actor to achieve the feat in Bollywood history," he wrote.
According to cine trade expert Taran Adarsh, over 79,500 tickets have been sold as advance booking for Day 1, which includes 66,000 (PVR + INOX) and 13,500 (Cinepolis).
Source: Live Mint
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Smaller scale helps regional OTT platforms ride bumps
With subscriptions hitting a plateau and large, foreign OTT platforms controlling budgets, smaller streaming services that focus on specific regional languages or a certain genre may be at an advantage thanks to their smaller scale. Platforms like aha video, Planet Marathi, OM TV and others say they haven’t had to cut budgets since they started cautiously and have benefited from catering to region-specific audiences. Their hyperlocal content and slow start have given them time to evaluate the market and they believe catering to a specific niche has its own advantages. Many are looking to scale up and seek funding.
“Being a homegrown player has distinct advantages. Our proximity to consumers enables us to have a better understanding of their expectations. Although rising content acquisition costs may pose a challenge, we leverage our flexibility to make strategic bets that enable us to make smart purchases while keeping a close eye on acquisition costs," said Rakesh C.K., head - SVoD and business strategy of aha, an OTT platform that primarily offers content in Telugu and Tamil. The company is also experimenting with content formats that help it tap newer audience categories while collaborations with hyperlocal partners are instrumental in expanding reach, C.K. added.
Akshay Bardapurkar, founder of OTT platform Planet Marathi said instead of reducing output, smaller players like them are trying to be completely sure of what they put out. “Ironically, the costliest shows are not the biggest successes. It is the small ones, more rooted in local sensibilities that work," he pointed out.
In a way, smaller players do not compete with international giants when it comes to content offerings, Rajat Agrawal, director of Ultra Media and Entertainment Group that owns Marathi OTT Ultra Jhakaas, said. “To battle rising prices and competition, they need to adopt tiered pricing models, offering different subscription plans with varying levels of content access and features. Bite-sized subscription plans work better. They may adopt a more targeted marketing strategy, focusing on digital advertising and organic growth through social media, influencer collaborations, and word-of-mouth promotion, rather than expensive traditional marketing campaigns," Agrawal said.
That said, smaller, homegrown OTT platforms face unique challenges in an environment where even foreign rivals are controlling costs, said Keerthi R Kumar, business head, south, at digital advertising agency FoxyMoron said.
“One of the key challenges is competing with the vast resources and extensive content libraries of larger players. To battle competition and rising prices, smaller players typically focus on differentiating themselves by offering niche content that cater to specific audience segments or by providing localized and regional content that resonate with their target market. Additionally, smaller players often prioritize fostering strong relationships with content creators and investing in original content that stand out from the offerings of their competitors. This can help them build a loyal following and establish a unique brand identity in the market. Collaboration with other smaller players and focus on region or language specific content is a possible outlet as well to stay ahead of the curve," Kumar said.
The approach of homegrown players has been different, said Nitin Jai Shukla, founder and managing director of OM TV, an app for spiritual content.
Because they didn't start by operating at levels where production values or infrastructure costs were massive, they've always been cautious. “India is a diverse country and you can cater to several niches in terms of language or demography even if production values are not high," Shukla said adding that the company is also in talks with aggregators and a Marathi language OTT platform to collaborate on content in order to strengthen its play.
Similarly, this June, BookMyShow Stream had partnered with MUBI, a platform known for international content to bring world cinema titles to the TVoD (transaction video-on-demand) platform. While bigger players will continue getting support from their parent companies, smaller OTTs who have already bridged the gap on a vernacular level, will have to maintain their momentum of constantly evolving and producing newer content, said Shivani Kamdar, associate creative director at digital agency SoCheers. “There are two things these homegrown brands have already identified and gotten right. One, to adopt short-form videos, which adds to the advantage of hyperlocalising the content. And two, endorsing newer talent that not only drive newer audiences but also come cheap," Kamdar said.
Source: Live Mint
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